From Sweden to Bangladesh and back – via Turkey. Helene Fredell, currently section head at H&M Home, has worked across the organisation in a variety of functions and believes constant improvement while having fun at work is key to success. She leads the way by giving her team a big responsibility – just like the one she was given when she started with the company sixteen years ago.
Helene Fredell, H&M Home
Name: Helene Fredell
Brand: H&M Home
Title: Section Head
Years in the H&M group (Years as Leader): 16 (8)
Previous roles: Worked across the organisation in Sweden, Bangladesh and Turkey in several roles, including buying assistant, buyer, product developer and senior merchandiser.
Striving to always be motivating, encouraging and clear in her expectations, Helene Fredell has been inspired by the different leaders she has had throughout her years at the H&M group.
“In the beginning of my career at the H&M group, I had a manager who offered a sense of stability to us in the team. Now as a leader, I want to be able to offer that same kind security and wellbeing for my team. The feeling she gave me many years ago is something I want to pay forward,” says Helene.
Responsibilities right from the start
“I am very driven by the [H&M group] values and I am always thinking in terms of constant improvement and what’s the next big thing. One thing that makes the H&M group stand out, is the big responsibility we get early on. I have been here a long time and the company has always believed in me. I think H&M has confidence in us employees from the very beginning.”
There are high expectations – but that also means that there is a lot of trust.
Offering the same opportunity of responsibility to her team today, Helene is confident that her team will deliver and that one of the most important things is to have fun at work.
“It’s not always easy, there can be setbacks; a collection that doesn’t sell, last minute changes, a trend that ends up going in the opposite direction than we originally thought. Sometimes we get another result than we expected but that isn’t necessarily something negative. I think it’s important to be open for new suggestions and outcomes. I want to coach my team to find their own solutions.
In the end, it’s all about rejoicing the good results, learning from our mistakes and feeling good about ourselves – we’re in this together!